The Interview: Injury Treatment and Prevention with Justin Candelora

Justin Candelora is a sports rehab masseuse who will come directly to your house and help you stay healthy for many wakeboarding years to come. He treats anyone from high-profile athletes like Darin Shapiro and Dallas Friday to WAKEBOARDING web editors to weekend warriores. A little freaked out about having a 250-pound dude with a shaved head and goatee come to massage you? Well, you won't have much time to think about it. When Candelora puts his weight into your traps, deep-tissue massaging knots and adhesions to correct your body and restore it to full potential, you'll start to realize the benefits massage can give. And the results are nothing short of amazing. You'll likely feel better than you have in years the next time you ride. We recently had a session with Candelora and went from post-op ACL couch time to climbing back up the progression ladder at the Orlando Watersports Complex the next day. We caught up with Candelora (after throwing an ice pack on) to find out how he works his magic.

What can you do for a wakeboarder? I can help increase range of motion and give you a faster recovery time so you spend less time sitting on the couch and more time out riding. I can make your body move with less effort. The flexibility helps with injury prevention. Drinking more water; nutrition is a big one; I can help with the overall picture. Wakeboarders are high-performance athletes, and they have to start treating themselves as such.

What are three things that will help riders stay healthy? Drinking water, stretching and rest.

Proper hydration is key, because muscles are 75 percent water, and the more studies they do, the more they find that even the fascia, which is the outer coating of the muscle, has water molecules in them. It's just like a car with no oil, if we don't have any oil, our engines aren't going to run properly.

Stretching, again, is keeping proper care of the muscles by releasing adhesions and getting all the blood back into the fibers.

Rest is the key to everything. Without proper rest, the body can't recuperate.

What don't riders do enough of? Massage. Proactive health in general. Be proactive. It's very important to get proper nutrition and to stretch and get your massages once a month or once a week or whatever you need for your body. It's a great tool to keep healthy.

What is an example of an enlightened rider who will stay healthy through the season and off-season? First thing: replace the coffee with water. A good breakfast. Something that's light but still has some good pick-me-up like fruit. Get out and ride